Organizing Notes

Bruce Gagnon is coordinator of the Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space. He offers his own reflections on organizing and the state of America's declining empire....

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Location: Bath, Maine, United States

I grew up in a military family and joined the Air Force in 1971 during the Vietnam War. It was there that I became a peace activist.

Saturday, September 14, 2013


Sen. Angus King (Independent-Maine) still has not publicly declared his official position on Syria attack. But today on the way home from New Harbor, Mary Beth and I got a good glimpse of his thinking. He hosted an interview with former Maine Republican Sen. William Cohen, who also served as Bill Clinton's Secretary of Defense.

The radio interview was on WGAN's "Inside Maine" show.

During the interview Sen. King said that he'd seen the administration's evidence of Syrian chemical use and that it was "strong but circumstantial".

King agreed with Cohen that the growing "isolationism" inside the Republican party (by the likes of Rand Paul) was problematic.

King said that on his recent trip to Jordan and Turkey, The Arabs (Saudi Arabia, Emirates, Jordan) want us to "quarterback" this thing and that "we should have started that a long time ago".

Cohen and King trashed Vladimir Putin several times with Sen. King calling Putin's recent Op-Ed in the New York Times "A joke". King complained that the Russian leader should not have access to American media like that. You can see Putin's piece here.

King admitted that Al-Qaida forces were mixed in with the so-called Syrian rebels but discounted their overall influence by saying they only made up about 20% of the rebel fighters.

Cohen suggested that Obama should have just attacked Syria and then gone to Congress for discussions after the damage was done. He suggested that the 1998 US four-day Desert Fox attack on Iraq was a model to have followed in this case. Cohen called for the taking out of Syrian military infrastructure, which we know is what Obama wanted to do anyway, as a way to help make it possible for a "rebel" victory in Syria.

King concluded the show by thanking Cohen: "You helped me think it through...I can argue it pretty persuasively either we have to authorize the strike to make the negotiation possible?"

Cohen agreed that this was the strategy to pursue as long as there was a short leash on the timeline to get rid of chemicals. It appears that the Obama administration will pursue this line - a new Congressional resolution giving Syria and Russia a very limited time to act coupled with permission to bomb if that arbitrary "red line" timeline is not met.

So it seems clear to me that King will pursue this path to allow limited diplomacy and give permission for military strikes.


Blogger Zachery d Taylor said...

'It is alarming that military intervention in internal conflicts in foreign countries has become commonplace for the United States. Is it in America’s long-term interest? I doubt it. Millions around the world increasingly see America not as a model of democracy but as relying solely on brute force, cobbling coalitions together under the slogan “you’re either with us or against us.” '\

This quote stands on it's own merits regardless of the source. The high profile media has allowed someone with credibility problems that hasn't always abided by some of the principles he advocates in this piece to make a case but they don't allow many of the more consistent critics to make a case as good if not much better in a high profile manner.

To find that people must continue looking for alternative media outlets that don't reach as high a percentage of the public as the corporate propaganda machine.

9/16/13, 10:48 AM  

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